Olten Conference 2018

1st International Social Work and Sexualities Conference

  • Key information
  • Conference programme
  • Keynote Speakers
  • Travel Information
  • Conference reviews

Transgressing Boundaries and the Intersection of Sexualities in Social Work

18-19 August 2016

The Sexuality and Social Work Interest Group invite colleagues to attend Transgressing Boundaries and the Intersection of Sexualities in Social Work – the International Conference to explore sexuality within social work education, research and practice.

The social work profession has both a troubled and troubling history and role in contemporary societies. Multiple complexities and the intersectionality of these complexities can be seen in issues such as austerity and modern capitalism, neoliberalism, human rights, immigration, role of social workers, and the education and teaching of these complexities. What has been less considered is the intersectionalities of sexuality with the complexities of contemporary society. The aim of this conference is to explore the transgressing of the boundaries of these complexities by linking the intersectionalities of sexuality. It seeks to explore those issues and topics within sexualities that are of interest to social work academics, students, practitioners and service users.

The Sexuality and Social Work Interest Group is an international network of academics, students, practitioners and service users that seeks to develop knowledge and practice innovations in the field of sexuality studies and social work. It seeks to encourage connections between members and interested organisations to enable further research and practice developments.

The sub themes of the conference are:

  • Migration and asylum
  • Trans* issues
  • Sex work
  • Religion and sexuality
  • Specific client/service user groups
  • Education, pedagogy and research
  • Polyamorous relationships
  • LGBT Inequalities

: University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland

Location: Olten, Switzerland

Sexualities in Social Work Conference Organising Committee

Jason Schaub – Buckinghamshire New University, UK
Daniel Gredig – University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland FHNW, Switzerland
Trish Hafford-Letchfield – University of Middlesex, UK
Ateret Gewirtz-Meydan – Bar-Ilan University, Israel
Martyn Higgins – London South Bank University, UK
Paul Willis – Swansea University, UK
Helen Crohn – Fordham University, USA


Call for papers has closed on 31/01/16.

Link to the host conference website.

Conference schedule

18th and 19th August 2016

Poster exhibition 
(Atrium B)
The poster exhibition will be open from Thursday, 18 August, 13h, to  Friday, 19 August, 15.15 h. Access is permanent.


Thursday, 18th August 2016

12.00 Registration open
13.00 Opening (Room A012)
13.15 – 14.00 Key note 1 (Room: A012)
Peter Aggleton: Culture, Health and Sexuality: insights and perspectives from a rapidly developing field

Concurrent sessions (click for presentations and and abstracts)

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16.00 Coffee break
16.30 –
Key note 2 (Room: A012)
Tracey Sagar and Debbie Jones: The Student Sex Work Project (TSSWP) – Bridging research and practice through innovation

Symposia and Workshops (click for presentations and and abstracts)

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20.00        Conference dinner


Friday, 19th August 2016

08.30 –
Key note 3 (Room: A012)
Nick Mulé: 
Queering Up Social Work: From Theory to Pedagogy to Practice 
09.15 Coffee break

Concurrent sessions (click for presentations and and abstracts)

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11.30 –     12.15 Key note 4 (Room: A012)
Michael Häusermann: 
From HIV to global health, from research to action, from Geneva to Switzerland: The Geneva Gay Men’s Health Project
12.30 Lunch break

Concurrent sessions (click for presentations and and abstracts)

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15.15 Closing / Best Poster Award (Room: A012)
15.45 Concluding session. Sexualität und Soziale Arbeit: Was nun? / Satellite meeting in German
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To see the key notes click either on the picture or on the name. 

Peter AggletonPeter Aggleton, PhD
Culture, Health and Sexuality: insights and perspectives from a rapidly developing field

Peter Aggleton has a background in sociology, psychology, policy studies, education and international health. A Scientia Professor at the University of New South Wales (UNSW), he is well known internationally for his analytic work on health education and health promotion, the social aspects of HIV, sexuality and gender, and sexual and reproductive health and rights. He is the editor-in-chief of the international peer reviewed journals: Culture, Health & Sexuality, Health Education Journal and Sex Education, and an associate editor of the journals AIDS Education and Prevention, Global Public Health and Health Education Research. He has worked closely with national, international and UN system agencies for over twenty-five years to strengthen international and national responses to HIV and sexual health. His position in the Centre for Social Research in Health extends appreciation of the ways in which HIV and sexuality sit within the broader field of politics, national and international development, education and sexual health. Within Arts and Social Sciences at UNSW more generally, he directs a major new strategic initiative on Practical Justice.

Tracey-Agar-Debbie-JonesTracey Sagar, PhD and Debbie Jones

The Student Sex Work Project (TSSWP) – Bridging research and practice through innovation

Dr Tracey Sagar is an Associate Professor in Criminology and Debbie Jones is a Lecturer in Criminology, both within the College of Law and Criminology, Swansea University. Tracey and Debbie have collaborated on major All Wales research projects over the last ten years including: Sex Work Research Wales; Sex Work and Substance Misuse in Wales; The Student Sex Work Project. While sex work has been a primary focus of research enquiry, their collective research interests span policing, multi-agency partnership working, sexual exploitation and human trafficking, and sexuality. Tracey and Debbie strive to produce research methodologies that are creative, innovative and inclusive. Their work combines research with new service delivery techniques, bringing academia with practice development together towards achieving positive social change. Both are academic advisers to the Cardiff Sex Work Forum, founder members of the All Wales Sex Work Safety Group, and Co-Directors of the Consortium for Sexuality Studies: Research, Innovation and Practice at Swansea University which launched in November 2015.

Nick MuléNick Mulé, PhD
Queering Up Social Work: From Theory to Pedagogy to Practice

Nick Mulé, PhD is an associate professor in the School of Social Work at York University in Toronto, Ontario, Canada where he teaches core and elective courses that span theory, policy and practice at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.  He is also seconded to the School for Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies to teach Sexual Activism for the Sexuality Studies Program.
Dr. Nick Mulé’s research interests are in the areas of advocacy, social inclusion/exclusion of LGBTQ populations in social policy and service provision and the degree of their recognition in cultural, systemic and structural contexts. He also engages in critical analysis of the LGBTQ movement and the development of queer liberation theory.
Nick is also active at the community level as founder, chairperson and member-at-large of Queer Ontario. In the past he was a founding member of Amnesty International LGBT Action Circle; founding board member for the Canadian Rainbow Health Coalition, a director and spokesperson for the Coalition for Lesbian and Gay Rights in Ontario; and founder and chairperson of the Rainbow Health Network. He is appointed co-chairperson of the Ontario LGBT Research & Policy Think Tank by Rainbow Health Ontario. He is also a psychotherapist serving LGBTQ people in private practice.

Michael-HausermannMichael Häusermann, Dipl. SW
From HIV to global health, from research to action, from Geneva to Switzerland: The Geneva Gay Men’s Health Project

He has considerable experience in development and advocacy for gay and AIDS organizations and issues. He worked at the Swiss AIDS Federation starting as a coordinator for French-speaking Switzerland in 1987 and then as general manager at the headquarters in Zurich. He was the Cultural Program Coordinator for the 1998 World AIDS Conference in Geneva. He collaborated on research projects at universities in Lausanne and Zurich. A founding member of Dialogai, he received a mandate in 2000 to write a concept paper on gay health for the gay AIDS-service organization, a first for the subject matter in Switzerland. Subsequently, he was asked to be the project coordinator for the Geneva Gay Men’s Health Project, a research action project in collaboration with the University of Zurich, and launched preparatory work for the first Checkpoint in Switzerland and Blues-out, the first mental health project for gays and lesbians. He is also in charge of prevention of homophobia at Dialogai and is regularly training police, teachers and students on the impact of homophobia on health, violence and wellbeing of LGBT people.

Travel information


University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland School of Social Work
Campus Olten

Practical Travel Information

How to get to Olten

Entry to Switzerland

Entry requirements for Switzerland for short-term stay:


Tourists to Switzerland need the following travel documents for a stay of up to three months:

  • Citizens from western European countries need a valid Identity Card (ID) or a passport that did not expire more than 5 years ago.
    This applies to nationals of: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain (UK), Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, San Marino, Spain, Sweden
  • Nationals of other countries need a valid passport to enter Switzerland.

 are not required if you

  • come as a tourist, student, to receive medical treatment, or are in airport transit, and
  • stay in Switzerland for less than 3 months and
  • are a citizen of one of the following countries:
  • Africa & Middle East: Israel, South Africa
  • Americas: Argentina, Barbados, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, U.S.A., Uruguay, Venezuela
  • Europe: Andorra, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia
  • Far East: Australia, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea
  • Nationals of all other countries or persons that want to stay longer or for other purposes need a valid passport and a visa is required to enter Switzerland.

Please note that stricter regulations apply for persons that intend to stay in Switzerland for more than 3 months or for other purposes than tourism, education, medical treatment or airport transit.

As passport and visa requirements may be subject to change at short notice, travellers are advised to check the official of Switzerland’s Federal Administration https://www.bfm.admin.ch/bfm/en/home/themen/einreise/merkblatt_einreise.html


Validity of travel document

Regardless of whether you require a visa, you must be in possession of a valid travel document recognised by the Swiss authorities (see List 1, Annex 1). Your travel document:

  • must be valid for at least 3 months after the date on which you plan to leave Switzerland and
  • must have been issued within the last 10 years.

Further information for Entry to Switzerland (e.g. Visa obligation)


Electricity in Switzerland

The electric current used throughout Switzerland is 230 Volts AC, 50 cycles (continental European standard).

Wall outlets are unique to Switzerland, however. There is a limited compatibility with other continental European plugs: the standard continental type hexagonal plugs with two round pins (Euroconnectors, pin distance 19 mm [3/4 inch], pin diameter 4.0 mm [1/6 inch]), applied for many electrical travel products, may be used without problems. Adaptors for other plugs are available in most hotels and in supermarkets. Please note that German / French / Austrian plugs with thick pins (diameter 4.8 mm [1/5 inch]) and Italian plugs with three thin pins in a row are not compatible with Swiss wall outlets, despite of the equal distance of their two main pins.

Flat type wall outlet for dry rooms

Deep type wall outlet for wet rooms (bathrooms, kitchen)

Swiss hexagonal three pin plug

European hexagonal two pin plug

  • Power plug adaptor needed: Yes
  • Power sockets: type J
  • Voltage: 230 V
  • Frequency: 50 Hz

Currency in Switzerland

Currency, Money Exchange Rate

Switzerland’s official currency is the Swiss Franc (abbreviations CHF, sFr, Fr.), and is divided into 100 Rappen [Rp] / Centimes [cts], but the smallest coin in use is 5 Rp. It is recommended to have a small amount of cash (50 CHF) on hand upon arrival in Switzerland or to change at the aiport / railway station for immediate expenses (taxi, city transportation etc.).

Under Swiss laws, tourists may import and export any reasonable amount of Swiss or foreign currency to and from Switzerland in cash or traveller cheques. Please note that other countries do have severe restrictions and check with the regulations applicable in your country of origin and in countries you may visit in transit.

The exchange rates of Swiss Francs against other European currencies have been stable almost for decades: The Euro at a rate of 1 CHF = approx.0.9 € (Euro) and the British Pound at a rate of 1 CHF = approx. 0.6 to 0.7 £ within roughly 15%. $

The current weakness of the Euro following the financial crisis and the “strength” of the Swiss Franc do not reflect basic economic facts and are therefore both speculative and unlikely to last for a longer period. Meanwhile the US Dollar has been oscillating between rates as different as 1 CHF = approx. 1.05 $ and 1 CHF = 0.95 $ within one decade. Over the last 40 years, the US $ has dropped from 5 CHF to 1 CHF.

Money converter:


Emergency numbers

You can dial the following emergency numbers toll-free from any payphone:
What Telephone number
General emergency calls 112
Fire service 118
Police 117
Ambulance 144
REGA (helicopter rescue service) 1414
Vehicle breakdown service 140
Toxicological Institute
(in case of poisoning)
Toxicological information centre 044 251 51 51
Radio (in case of avalanche) 161.300 MHz (emergency channel)
Helpline FDFA from Switzerland: 0800 247365
(Federal Department of Foreign Affairs from abroad: +41 800 247365